27 Nov 2014

The Christmas quiet period: the perfect time to reconsider your DR strategy

Christmas, traditionally the “quiet period” for work, is the best time to step back and consider where new strategic opportunities can be brought into the business. And one of the areas that many business are lacking in is robust disaster recovery (DR).

Earlier this year a report found that just eight per cent of SMEs in the US are prepared to recover from an unplanned IT outage, and 23 per cent would take longer than a day to resume operations. The numbers would be similar in Australia, and it’s easy to understand why. An investment in DR by definition money spent with no return… until a disaster strikes and then you’re quickly going to discover the value of having a robust DR system in place. And outages do happen frequently, whether it be from a disaster outside of your control (power outage, natural disaster), or internal error. If you don’t have an adequate DR system, then your business is in trouble, to say the least. You’ll lose critical data assets, applications, and work that will either be not recoverable or slow to recover.

This can be a major problem for businesses, with some predictions that as many as 70% of small businesses will shut down within one year of suffering a major data loss. And, while a simple DR solution will allow you to recover the lost data… it will also be a time consuming and recovery time can be very expensive to a business. Even the most simple of DR solutions can be capex heavy in terms of additional infrastructure.

With Cloud technology enabling real time, continuous replication for an opex monthly investment, rather than a large up-front cost and on-going management costs, it may be that now is the right time to reconsider how well your business is protected from disaster. There are multiple benefits to investing in a Cloud-based DR solution:

Speed. In the event of a disaster, within a few hours of it being declared and verified, the full IT system can be recovered by specialist resources outside of your organisation, saving the business both a great deal of time and money.

Real-time Monitoring. Because Cloud allows remote monitoring, it’s possible for the IT partner to receive immediate alerts in the event that something is going wrong. It’s also possible to generate customised and more detailed reporting than using traditional systems.

Cost. Because it is a monthly’ subscription fee, rather than an up-front purchase, Cloud-based DR functions much more like an insurance policy; it’s a small cost for the comfort of knowing that you’re covered if something should go wrong.

Christmas might not be the best time to be dwelling on how things can go wrong in your business, but it is the perfect time to make sure the business is protected and ready for the challenges of the New Year.